In an exchange of texts on Friday night Mrs. Sherlock asked if I wanted to hike up to Pittock Mansion instead of doing the default river loop walk we often do on Saturday mornings. I was to meet her at church at 9AM. I thought we were walking up so I skipped going to the gym beforehand because I am having this weird thing happening with my feet.
This is the second time this month where after say a day of fairly substantial walking, at least 7 miles, the balls and tops of my feet start aching, as if the bones were being compressed even though I wear good roomy shoes. This last time it was after last Wednesday where I wore my waterproof boots for half the walking and my sneakers with insoles the other half.
I had a rough sleep on Friday night, the cats were restless and I woke up anxious about work and my feet were aching and my head was aching and I am like oh jeez do I have the energy to do this hike???
I put on my most supportive shoes and rain gear and walked up to the church anyway. And Mrs. Sherlock and Frida showed up in her car. Oooh, luxury. She was still sniffling from her cold and wanted to only do half the hike but wanted to get in one long public stairway because she is trying to get conditioned for snowshoeing.
We had a lovely, (but muddy), 3.9 mile hike with 71 floors and I took this picture at the top. If you look carefully you can see Mt. Hood, white against all the layers of gray.
It was clear as we were talking and nearing the “chateau” that both of us felt better, missed each other and were buoyed by each other’s company. It was very touching to realize that we spend time together because we enjoy each other’s company, not out of habit or obligation.
Afterwards she took me over the hill to a busy Starbucks for hot chocolate and I gave her a gift card for Penzey’s Spices. I love supporting them and got a handwritten thank you with some thyme and really good pepper in the package with the card. We are talking about redoing our spice shelves because you know some of the spices I have are seriously out of date. We will probably split them.
The treatment her husband is getting for the ulcers in his colon from the chemo is working and he is feeling so much better and can actually go out for a few hours now. This is such good news. At 80, she says, he is one tough old guy.
She first was a nurse manager in the Navy and then in hospitals as well as a home health nurse, (which she loved) and she had some good advice for how to handle my work situation that was helpful and kind. She can often be a hard ass with me about work but this time she really understood and I was grateful for the kindness.
I was able to get an e-book loan from the library that I am enjoying; it is a very short memoir by Christian Wiman, called He Held Radical Light The Art of Faith, The Faith of Art. Wiman was the editor of Poetry Magazine for 9 years. It is full of insight, reflection, appreciation and gossip. And I was listening to a podcast from the London Review of Books on Wallace Stevens last night (very helpful in understanding an embarrassing academic episode at a Steven’s conference in the book). It is firing up my desire to focus on poetry again.
After experimenting I am beginning to think the culprit in the foot aching issue is my waterproof boots combined with my aging feet. They were better this morning and I went to the gym and trotted on the treadmill and did some upper body weights.
I am working, (on my own), both Monday and Wednesday, I just have Tuesday off.
Saint Joe is in San Francisco.
I’ll be teaching Wednesday and Friday (if I have any students) but tomorrow I have a break.
They want me to see an actual doctor to check my ears out before I get my hearing aids the week after next so I’ll do that Thursday. I have reconciled myself to the idea that I won’t get the special projects job nor the bump in salary that was supposed to go with it and that had been on the table and that I will need to continue to work extra until I retire to keep my compensation level stable.
It is not fair, oh so not fair, but it is what it is and all these people in their 40’s making these really bad decisions will, in time, pay their dues by finding that in a mere 20 years they will be considered expendable and not worth acknowledging.
Next year I am taking off whatever days I want. The fact that I won’t have a backup is not my problem. Like WebWoman says…Let it Go, Let it Go, Let it Go…
That is my new mantra.
Last updated December 24, 2018